Lieutenant Alonzo Cushings

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Lieutenant Alonzo Cushings

This article (a class assignment) was submitted by an Eighth Grader from Wisconsin. I was so impressed by the story and the way this sweet young lady, who I affectionately –and now proudly– refer to as “my niece”, was able to synthesis the story of this truly remarkable hero. He most certainly deserves our nations highest award for valor and Danielle deserves applause for bringing his story to our attention. Thank you Danielle. “Press the Attack!”

Lieutenant Alonzo Cushings

by: Danielle Weymier

On November 6, 2014 justice was finally done to Lieutenant Alonzo Cushings as he was awarded with the Congressional Medal of Honor for his valor and perseverance. Lieutenant Cushings was born on January 19th, 1841 in Delafield, Wisconsin and he was a graduate of West Point. He was an artillery officer in the union army during the Civil War. He commanded an artillery which had to fight the famous Confederate attack, Pickett’s Charge, in the battle of Gettysburg. During the battle, when Cushings had many wounds, he refused to withdraw from the front line and move to the rear. Even though Lieutenant Cushings lived before Colonel John Ripley, he faithfully fulfilled his command “Press the Attack! Never shrink back!” Lieutenant Cushings was extraordinary as he did not die from one wound but three. The first was a shell fragment that went through his shoulder. The second wound was another shell fragment that tore his abdomen and groin, exposing his intestines, but he still persevered and held them in place with his hands to continue pressing the attack. The third and final wound was a bullet that entered his mouth and escaped through the back of his skull. He was twenty two years old when he died. Lieutenant Cushings is buried in the West Point Cemetery next to Major General John Buford. His tombstone reads “Faithful unto Death.”  Lieutenant Alonzo Cushings was truly an honorable and valiant man who died defending the Union and although he died at a young age, his legacy will live forever.

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